Association between the 5q31.1 gene neurogenin1 and schizophrenia

Ayman H. Fanous, Xiangning Chen, Xu Wang, Richard L. Amdur, F. Anthony O'Neill, Dermot Walsh, Kenneth S. Kendler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Multiple lines of evidence suggest that schizophrenia results from aberrant neurodevelopment. The neurogenin1 gene (neurog1) consists of a single 1,666 bp exon that encodes a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor that causes neuronal differentiation and induces cortical and glutamatergic differentiation programs. Because of its function and its location in 5q31.1, which has been linked to schizophrenia in multiple samples, we tested it for association with the disorder. We sequenced neurog1 in 25 affected subjects from the Irish Study of High-Density Schizophrenia Families. We observed a 5′-UTR SNP at position -60, already present in databases as rs8192558, and tested it along with rs2344485, rs8192559, and rs2344484. Narrow, intermediate, and broad diagnostic definitions were used. The major alleles of rs8192558 and rs2344484 were over-transmitted to affected subjects using both Pedigree Disequilibrium Test (PDT) (0.01 ≤ P ≤ 0.06) and FBAT (0.02 ≤ P ≤ 0.07). A haplotype consisting of the major alleles of all four SNPs was significantly over-transmitted in FBAT to the broad definition (P = 0.049), with trend significance to the narrow and intermediate definitions, and with trend significance in PDT. In confirmatory tests using 657 cases and 411 controls, this haplotype was slightly but not significantly over-represented in cases (81% vs. 77%, P = 0.21). These results, along with a priori evidence for the involvement of neurog1 in neurodevelopment, suggest that variants in neurog1 might have a small effect on susceptibility to schizophrenia. This gene should be tested in additional and larger samples.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-214
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Genetics, Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 5 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Association
  • Neurodevelopmental
  • Neurogenin1
  • Schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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